Following representations from the community the matter of the Holy Trinity Church was on the Agenda in Committee of the Whole, which is not open to the public.
Mr Charles Troup came along and addressed Councillors and Staff. Council made a resolution that; Council negotiate a 12 month option to puchase the property from the Anglican Church. Further that Council pay a refundable $100,000 on settlement within 12 months on condition that the balance of asking price be raised by Community Steering Committee prior to setttlement. Secondly that the Community Steering Committee be asked to honour their commitment to raise funds for the Master Plan. That resolution was to go to the Church within 24 hours which it did.
Unfortunately that did not meet with the church's approval and they required a non refundable deposit of $100,000 and six months to pay balance. (since altered to $20,000 non refundable)
The General Manager then had to telephone each Councillor and ask for their approval or otherwise. By rights we should have had a special meeting and lodge a Recision Motion signed by three Councillors. That will go to the next meeting and we will have to ratify the decision put to the Church.
This matter has been a real strain on the community and in particular the Steering Committee who have been trying so hard. This community will raise the money I am sure as our generosity here is well known. There is a bit of a bad taste left in some mouths over all this.
q q q
We were told that when the EIS is completed for Stingray Creek Bridge there will be another Public Forum held to bring everyone up to date. It is some time now since we had those other couple of meetings at North Haven Hall when all the options were considered and the decison made to take a particular option that was presented among others. In fact the bridge was expected to be commenced by late 2004 and hopefully completed by 2006 when the decision was made after the public meetings.
q q q
For about six months now a dear old soul has been coming to Council Forum at 5pm session in the middle of our coucil meeting and talking about wanting Town Green expanded to make a garden in honour of all those who have fallen during previous wars. To carry out his wishes would entail pulling down several buildings including a huge Motel, The Hog's Breath Cafe, etc, which is just a fantasy as who would buy those buildings, providing anyone wished to sell, and who would have that sort of millions of dollars!
Because of this Council resolved to alter the Code of Meeting Practice, Code No16, to the following: That to ensure that The Forum does not impinge on Council business, that Council not permit these sessions to be used for unnecessary repetition or duplication of points of view. The proposed amendment be advertised for two weeks.
q q q
There has been quite a lot of letters written to Councillors and Council staff by Wauchope residents who are not happy about the Wauchope CBD Masterplan to By-pass the main street (High Street) by going along Cameron Street (continuation of Bago Road down to the Oxley Highway in Wauchope (High Street) and then into Blackbutt Drive and coming back on to the Oxley Highway up near Timbertown. The residents don't want all that traffic flowing past. Council resolved that before the draft Masterplan is finalised it will be discussed at a Council Workshop. Further a Wauchope Town Centre Masterplan Committee will be formed. At this stage it will not be like the Town Centre Master Plan Committee at Port Macquarie as that committee plans what they want done in the town with the hundreds of thousand dollars levy that the property owners in that CBD pay voluntarily above their rates to keep that CBD beautiful. I don't know at this stage if the Wauchope shop owners wish to go along that path or not. I know Laurieton wasn't interested when it was put to them about the same time Port Macquarie decided to beautify their CBD.
q q q
Council was happy to resolve that they would accept funding totalling $40,284.00 from the Ministry of Arts ($33,892.00) and $6,392.00 from Museums and Galleries Foundation to put towards a Public Programs and Audience Development Officer's position. Some of those funds will also go toward Indigenous Art from the Museum of Contemporary Art Collections, some Exhibition programs and last but not least the Ruscomol Glass Exhibition. The Gallery is very active and if ever in Port with time to spare it is worth a visit.
q q q
You may not be aware but we have in our midst some very hard working volunteers who spend lots of time planting trees and generally looking after our Laurieton Cemetery. Lorna Shumack is the coordinator and she would love to hear from any retired person who finds it hard doing nothing or any other person who would like to spare a few hours here and there to assist.
Our local Rotarians have had a great day last Saturday celebrating their Centenary. Paul Harris founded Rotary in Chicago in 1905 and it spread from there to become an international Body. Their Past Presidents walkway by the river from the Sea Rescue Shed to join the one behind the LUSC has filled in a missing link. That was opened at 11am on Saturday. Their Concert starring many of our young talented school kids and other talented persons was held at the Camden Haven High School Multi-Purpose Centre and the LUSC was bouncing with their very well attended Rotary Dinner to which many Rotarians from far and wide travelled. We wish them all the best for their organisation for the next 100 years.